Please Don’t Transport Firewood
I am an avid camper. I am a nature lover and consider myself a conscientious camper.
It was hard for me to accept, since I only burn deadfall, and firewood that I buy near my campsite, that my evening campfire could be destroying Michigan’s forests. But, I was guilty of taking firewood from home on some of my camping trips, and taking leftover firewood home with me after my camping trips. I had to face the fact that I was part of the problem.
I have learned that when we transport wood, we can inadvertently be transporting invasive insects and diseases that can kill our native trees. Hidden within the firewood there can be eggs and larvae. When the eggs hatch at the new location the insects will attack the trees in that area.
One of the invasive species, is the Emerald Ash Borer, believed to have come from Asia in shipping crates. This pest has caused destruction to the native ash trees throughout Michigan. As many as 10 million trees have been affected. Seventy thousand trees in the Detroit area have been lost. Emerald Ash Borers have now been confirmed in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio , and Ontario.
Quarantines have been established in Michigan to try to slow the spread of the infestation. It is illegal to transport any deciduous trees (trees that lose their leaves) from the quarantined area. You cannot bring any ash firewood into any state park, state forest, forest campground, or recreation area.
It is illegal to move hardwood firewood out of Michigan. Any hardwood firewood being bought over the Mackinac bridge is confiscated.
To limit the spread of the Emerald Ash borer, Federal quarantines restricting the transport of ash wood from Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia have now been established.
The province of Ontario, as well as other states, are trying to limit the spread of all insect pests known to live in firewood by placing regulations or bans on moving any firewood.
Although the Emerald Ash Borer is the biggest threat to Michigan’s forests, Oak Wilt, Beech Bark disease, Dutch Elm disease, and Gypsy Moths are causing major damage, and are also being spread by transported firewood.
http://don’tmovefirewood.org says: “Burn it where you buy it.”
Use only locally cut firewood. Never use wood that was cut more than 50 miles away, or at least within the county. It is even better if you can burn wood that was cut less than 10 miles away. If you must use wood that is not from your area, use wood with a USDA APHIS seal, indicating that the wood has been heat treated to kill and insects.
If you are not sure where to get firewood in your camping area, visit http://firewoodscout.org
Join me in taking measures to save our forests for the generations to come. It’s not that hard to do.
Don’t transport firewood!
“It is not so much for it’s beauty that the forest makes a claim upon men’s hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air that emanation from old trees, that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit”
Robert Louis Stevenson